Fear of missing out (FOMO): The fear of missing something and what helps

Fear of missing out (short: FOMO) describes the fear of missing something and therefore not belonging. How the phenomenon arises and what helps against it - an overview.

Social pressure from FOMO: "I'm afraid of missing something"

Your friends make a spontaneous appointment for dinner in the afternoon - you can't be there because you already have a date. Cancel? Can't. In the evening you are restless, constantly looking at your mobile phone and wondering what your friends are doing. Are they having more fun than you?

At FOMO friends become a stress factorEven if you'd rather spend Saturday night on the couch: You're going to the party to be there.

Fear of missing out at work: More, more, more until nothing more works

The fear of missing something is a persistent companion not only in private life but also in professional life. Will it harm my career if I decide against a project? Do I miss something if I leave work early? Or do I miss a source of money if I refuse a client's order?

If you're always afraid of missing something, you take over more and more taskssays "yes" to everything and pushes one overtime hour after another. The result: mistakes, unproductivity and mental illness such as depression, Eating disorders or Burnout.

Isolation through social media: What the feed does with feelings

Tina collects Follower on Instagram and was already on first Events invited, Tim does Holiday in the Maldives and posts underwater videos. And on TikTok your friends dance through the night in the hippest club in town - top styled of course with perfect make-up.

And you? Sitting on your balcony and not quite sure what to post. Because your outfit is as unsuitable for Instagram as the chocolate bar that lies next to you. The Flood of feeds from people who are enjoying their lives to the fullsuccessful and have perfected the mindful-vegan lifestyle, is a breeding ground for inferiority complexes.

Life in social networking is more exciting, structured and happy than your own. The Comparison with others leads to envy and dejection. The consequence: The feeling of not being enough. The impression of not belonging drives excessive social media users into social isolation.

Confirm that Studieswho have studied how social media and depression are related. Whether Facebook or Xing - the results show that social networks have a negative effect on self-esteem and mood.


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When do you get FOMO?

Do one or more situations from the text look familiar to you? To what extent you are affected by the Fear of missing out can be found on the PsychCentral site in a short test check.

In principle, the following characteristics indicate FOMO:

  • You're always wondering what your friends or colleagues are doing
  • You plan your everyday life exclusively according to meetings with friends and work colleagues, parties and social events - even if you don't feel like it
  • When you're not spending time with friends, you scroll through social networks
  • You're afraid to leave the office too soon - you might miss something
  • When you see pictures on Instagram, do you feel ugly, boring or have the feeling that His life is worse than others
  • Feelings when scrolling through social media: Envy, dejection, frustration
  • Whether it's about clothes, figure or career - you constantly compare yourself with others
  • Mostly you think about what your fellow men think of you
  • Concentration is not your strong point: Your eyes keep wandering to your smartphone
  • say "no"is out of the question for you.

Immediate measures against FOMO: 5 helpful tips

The fear of missing something stresses and gnaws at self-esteem. What helps: More mindfulness and things that help you personally:

1. learn to enjoy things

Mindfulness helps you to appreciate your own life more. What are you doing? What's good about it? How does it help you to have a happy life? To perceive moments consciously and learn to appreciate them: The key to more Mindfulness and happiness in everyday life.

2. regularly Digital Detox

Social media floods us every second with pictures and videos of people who are apparently happier, more talented and more successful than we are. That's why: Take regular digital time-outsin which you can do without your smartphone and laptop altogether. This helps you to switch off, visualize and realize your own goals.

3. spend more time with yourself

The problem with FOMO is that whether you're an influencer, a best friend, a colleague or the clique at school - if you're afraid of missing something, you care more about others than about yourself. That's why: create routines that help you concentrate: and only on yourself.

Go jogging or ride your bike, relax during a walk, write a diary or romp around on the Drawing pad off. Hobbies like these, you should from now on regularly integrate into your everyday life. If you are acutely struggling with FOMO, use it as an effective distraction.

4. visualize your dream everyday life

If you constantly compare yourself with your friends, stars and influencers, you are not at peace with yourself. What can help? Option 1: You learn to accept things as they are. However, this always leaves a grain of dissatisfaction behind. Option 2: Visualize your dream everyday life and implement it step by step.

This strategy helps you to focus more on yourself again and brings happiness into your life. What is important to you? What does a day look like that really fulfils you? Write or paint your thoughts on paper.

Marie Kondo also pursues this strategy with her method. For the clean-up expert, it is the key to an orderly and happy life. Her approach: If you can imagine the perfect everyday life, it is easier to surround yourself with things that really make you happy. And that includes letting go of stress factors.

5. create order and make it nice

This is another of Marie Kondo's approaches, which allows self-esteem to soar: Clean up is not only meditative, but also distracts from the acute fear of missing something seemingly important.

In addition: If you sort laundry, arrange make-up and sharpen pencils, you cannot scroll through the feed. The result in the end makes you happy: Everything is neat and tidy and with a few flowers even really beautiful.

Text: Natalie Grolig